Professor Sharon Lean Appointed Associate Dean of the Graduate School

 Professor Sharon Lean

Appointed Associate Dean of the Graduate School

This May, Dr. Sharon Lean was selected to serve as Associate Dean for Student Services in the Graduate School. Dr. Lean is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science, where she held the position of Director of Graduate Programs from 2014 through 2018.  She has a B.A. in Latin American Studies with Honors from Brown University and a Masters in Social Sciences from the Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales in Mexico. She earned her Ph.D. at the University of California Irvine, where she was an NSF Democracy Fellow. Her area is comparative politics with a focus on Latin America and the politics of democratization in the developing world.  

Dr. Lean is the author of Civil Society and Electoral Accountability in Latin America (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) and more than 10 chapters, journal articles and short monographs. Her work is published in English and Spanish in journals such as DemocratizationElectoral Studies, and Socieded Civil.  Her most recent piece, coauthored with graduate student Alanna Jackson is a comprehensive review entitled, “Mexican Political Development” in Oxford Bibliographies in Political Science. She is also co-editor of Promoting Democracy in the Americas (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2007). As part of her research, she has monitored numerous election in countries across Latin America including Nicaragua, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela, and also in Liberia, West Africa.

Dr. Lean is the recipient of multiple research awards including as PI for a 2016 US Agency for International Development (USAID) grant on "Strengthening Women's Civic and Political Participation" and a 2013 Fulbright Scholars Award to conduct research in Mexico. She has also participated in grants to support graduate and undergraduate training at Wayne, including the 2016 NEH NextGen Humanities PhD Training Grant and as co-PI for a 2017 MetLife Foundation Study Abroad Innovation Grant with the Office of International Programs.

A recipient of the CLAS Excellence in Teaching Award (2010-11), the President's Excellence in Teaching Award (2011) and the Outstanding Graduate Director Award (2017), Dr. Lean is passionate about student success. She regularly offers courses with a study abroad component to provide field research experience to undergraduate and graduate students, and has supervised dozens of student research projects through the McNair Scholars program and Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program.

We wish Sharon well in her new position and remind her that she always has a home in the Department of Political Science.


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Professor Sharon Lean Appointed Associate Dean of the Graduate School 7/20/2018
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